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Housing Futures: Community-led Alternatives for Greater Manchester

Housing Futures: Community-led Alternatives for Greater Manchester was a research partnership that sought to advance understanding about the current and future potential of community-led housing to contribute to a more equitable, inclusive and democratic housing landscape in Greater Manchester. It ran from 2017-2019.

Who we were

Housing Futures brought together academics, housing sector professionals, and members of the Greater Manchester cooperative and housing movement to co-produce knowledge and action about a range of community-led models, from cooperatives and co-housing to community land trusts. We worked through a research steering group which was supported by a wider reference group of informed advisors. Greater Manchester Housing Action was a key partner and took  forward the findings of the research when the partnership concluded at the end of 2018.

Our approach

We aimed to integrate practical experiences in Greater Manchester, across the UK, and internationally, with existing academic knowledge in order to understand the many benefits, as well as the challenges, involved in realising community-led models for housing. We produced a set of proposals tailored specifically to the Greater Manchester context about the kinds of approaches that may be most appropriate for meeting the needs of particular groups – with a focus on low-income neighbourhoods; and for achieving ‘affordability plus’ outcomes: such as improving health and well-being, or enhancing local democracy. Through learning exchanges, networking events, and public debates, we built a Greater Manchester Community-led Housing Network made up of individuals and organisations interested in taking action in response to our findings.

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For more information about Housing Futures please contact: Hannah Berry, Housing Futures Steering Group Chair, at gmhousingfutures@gmail.com

For more information about the Realising Just Cities programme at the University of Sheffield please contact: Dr Sophie King, Realising Just Cities Research Fellow, at s.king@sheffield.ac.uk